Josh Kelly meets David Avanesyan for the European title on Saturday
Josh Kelly returns to the ring on Saturday against David Avanesyan in a battle for the European welterweight title.
This is a fight several years in the making after fortune conspired to postpone this bout on multiple occasions, but now the Briton has his chance to take that step up in quality to kick-start his career.
With the potential for a mega all-British fight with Conor Benn down the road, it is imperative Kelly proves his worth here against the tough Russian, who has two impressive wins over. The 32-year-old also defeated the legendary Shane Mosley in his final fight of his career to date and took Lamont Peterson the distance back in 2017.
There has been a war of words between the camps, adding extra spice to this contest, which backs up Matchroom’s first card back at Wembley Arena last weekend when Josh Warrington was stunned by Mauricio Lara.
Kelly, under the guidance of trainer Adam Booth, has revealed he has a “premonition” and “good energy” heading into this contest, which ends a 14-month spell out of the ring.
READ MORE: Anthony Joshua reacts to video of Tyson Fury looking out of shape
Check out the rest of the card below, which includes a potentially explosive meeting between Florian Marku and Rylan Charlton, also at 147 pounds.
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Eddie Hearn confirmed on Wednesday that both fighters tested negative for Covid-19 in the fight bubble, clearing one of the final hurdles to the fight going ahead.
Here is everything you need to know about the fight:
When and where is the fight?
The fight is at Wembley Arena, London on Saturday, 20 February, with the undercard starting at 7pm GMT and the main event will follow expected ring walks at 10pm GMT.
David Avanesyan defends his European title against Josh Kelly on Saturday
How can I watch the fight?
In the U.K. and Ireland, Avanesyan vs. Kelly will air on Sky Sports Arena, the headline bout will be added to Sky Sports Main Event too. You can therefore catch a live stream of the card and main event through the Sky Go app, or if you’re not a subscriber, stream the action through NowTV.
Everywhere else in the world (except Australia and New Zealand), DAZN is the platform to watch the fights through a live stream, more information on subscriptions can be found here.
Tale of the tape
Months since last fight
5 ft 10in
5 ft 8in
Method of victory
Kelly KO/TKO or DQ: 7/2
Kelly by Decision/Technical Decision: 7/5
Avanesyan by KO/TKO or DQ: 21/10
Avanesyan by Decision/Technical Decision: 9/2
- David Avanesyan vs. Josh Kelly – European welterweight title
- Robbie Davies Jr. vs. Gabriel Gollaz Valenzuela – 10 rounds, junior welterweight
- Florian Marku vs. Rylan Charlton – 10 rounds, welterweight
- Johnny Fisher vs. Matt Gordon – 6 rounds, heavyweight
- Jordan Gill vs. Cesar Juarez -10 rounds, featherweight
Avanesyan on Kelly
“The first time we were supposed to fight Kelly said ‘no fight’ three hours before the first bell,” said Avanesyan. “It was very difficult for me. You give everything to this sport, all of that hard work and losing the weight. I still don’t understand why. People say that Kelly was feeling unwell, but I saw Kelly in the evening after the weigh-in looking happy and speaking with friends. Everything was good.
“I’ve been training for this fight for over two years. I hope everything will be okay this time. I will never disrespect any fighter, but let’s just say the events of the past couple of years have made me very angry. The fact I have to spend Christmas away from my family and young child has given me extra motivation, not that any was needed.
“Kelly is a good fighter. He was a good amateur boxer. His professional record is good so far. He’s sharp and fast. I have the experience over him. Now is my time. I need to take the big fights. I’m ready. I’m working with my team to give everything for another World Title. My style is to give everything, take my time and ensure that I get the win.
“I want to show the fans a good fight. I’ll do my best and give everything to win. After Kelly I need another World Title fight. For now, all of my focus and energy is on my fight on February 20 and defending my European Title. I am here to deal with Kelly once and for all.”
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